THE BLOG

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Joanna Riley Weidenmiller Headshot

4 Reasons Why Candidate Experience Matters

Posted: Updated:

It is so important, that they also give awards for that.

From October 7 until 9 at the HR Tech Conference in Mandalay Bay -- Las Vegas, Talent Board.org will be awarding the best companies in Candidate Experience based on the results of surveys run during the year. The mission of the Talent Board is to facilitate the evolution of the employment candidate experience.

A study of more than 3,900 U.S. workers was conducted online by Harris Interactive from November 1 to November 30, 2012 to find out the impact bad candidate experiences has on enterprises. The results are shocking: 75 percent of candidates never heard back from employers after applying. While 82 percent of job seekers expect to hear back after sending in an application, the truth is most employers can't be bothered; 60 percent of the surveyed job seekers admitted they never even heard back after taking time out of their schedules to meet for an interview.

But why is this happening? Companies are overwhelmed with tons of resumes coming in every day; just like Yahoo! whose CEO Marissa Mayer confirmed at Tech Crunch Disrupt on September 11, they receive 12,000/week. To manage this traffic, companies use ATSs (applicant tracking systems) that process and "score" resumes based on selected keywords. In this way, candidates' value proposition is processed by machines; furthermore, resumes don't really communicate candidates' ideas, motivation, engagement and fit in company culture and role.

The results of this keywords process are harmful for companies, as they are missing out talent and wasting time and money to interview bad candidates based on "qualified resumes" (according to machine's judgment), as well as facing the cost replacing bad hires afterwards. On the other side, by providing bad experiences to candidates, the company risks to lose future candidates, customers and new hires too (turnover now is at its highest).

  • 42 percent of candidates will never seek employment at the company again
  • 22 percent will tell others not to work there
  • 9 percent will tell others not to purchase products or services from the company

Why is it so important to let candidate have a good experience?

  1. Engagement is the key: engaging candidates helps building company culture and candidate fit way before the on boarding.
  2. Rejected but still interested -- and interesting: candidates with a good experience will more likely keep their profile updated, look for new positions in the future and grow company's database of talented and motivated people.
  3. Brand reputation: applicants are also customers, users, friends or relatives of more customers and users. Reputation is important in the marketplace, and providing a good product or service in such a competitive environment is not enough. Customers are more and more conscious about company's impact on environment and on society too. Touching thousands of lives -- applicant's lives -- leaves a footprint on the society.
  4. Selecting the best: investing resources in engaging candidates brings another competitive advantage: it helps selecting the most talented ones. When companies decide to engage candidates to go beyond the resume, they source ideas and enable the transaction of value proposition between talent and hiring manager.